We’ve been slowly reviewing and revisiting the 2009 season over the past few weeks -- for a refresher, look here -- but now it’s time to take the next step in the project. Drumroll, please. It’s time to start working on our 2009 All-NFC North team.
I’d like to follow the approach we used for last year’s team. Accompanying this post is a skeleton team that includes only the players I think there is little debate about. For the other positions, I’ve employed the creative claim of “HELP.” That’s your cue to send me your suggestions after you debate them among yourselves, of course.
I’ll sift through your suggestions and post the final team later this week. I’m also planning on a separate post, probably next week, that hands out our NFC North season-ending awards. Hold on to your hats for that one.
A few notes and thoughts before you get to it:
Since we waited until after the NFC North portion of the playoffs, feel free to consider postseason performance here. No reason to, say, ignore Green Bay tight end Jermichael Finley's 159-yard performance at Arizona just because it came after the regular season.
On offense, I eliminated the fullback because I just don’t consider it important enough in any of the four NFC North offenses to merit recognition here. Instead, I added a WR/TE position. That should be self-explanatory. If you think there is a third receiver worthy of this team, let me know. Or, if you can’t choose between a deep group of tight ends, choose two.
On defense, I’m not sure if there is a perfect way to account for the fact that Green Bay used a 3-4 scheme. So I’ll keep it flexible. If I get overwhelming support for four defensive linemen and three linebackers, we’ll keep the NFC North in a 4-3 alignment. But if it appears that four linebackers should make it, I’ll consider a hybrid DE/LB position.
If you disagree with one of my so-called “locks,” feel free to offer alternatives.